House dust mite (HDM) is the most frequent in-house allergen known to induce allergic symptoms in humans. HDM-induced subacute allergic asthma in marmoset is a state-of-the-art model, closely reflecting more features of clinical asthma than rodent models. Marmosets are new world monkeys with a very high level of homology and physiological similarity to humans.
The allergen challenge involves repeated exposure to HDM for a period of several weeks. This exposure treatment has been shown to reproduce hallmarks of human asthma, including Th2-driven allergic inflammation with influx of eosinophils. It provides the opportunity to assess novel treatments in a therapeutic rather than a prophylactic setting.